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Fri, 26 May 2017

Glossary of Web Terminology

Here are some of the terms you will see used on this website and others explained. It is by no means an exhaustive list, but provides an insight into some of the most common terminology you may encounter:

Bandwidth - A measure of how much information that can be sent through a connection, measured normally in bits-per-second.

Blog - Short for web log, this is a web page that acts as a personal journal.

CGI - Stands for Common Gateway Interface, and allows web pages to interact dynamically with the server - for instance to take user input and provide appropriate output.

Cookie - A text file that is stored by your browser and contains details about you for a particular web site - for instance, how many times you have visited the site.

CSS - A standard for specifying the appearance of all elements of a web page.

Domain name - The initial part of a URL, up to the first /.

FTP - File Transfer Protocol, a way of uploading files to a web server from your computer, to share on the internet.

HTML - Hypertext Markup Language. A way of formatting content and text to display on the internet via a web browser which interprets the tags and displays a page accordingly.

IP Address - A unique number that identifies every machine connected to the internet.

JavaScript - A programming language used in web pages to add interactivity, usually in response to reader actions.

Keyword - A word that is searched for in a search command. For instance, "management".

Meta tag - A HTML tag that tells you or a search engine robot about the document, for instance giving a brief description of a site.

MySQL - An open source relational database management system; commonly used with PHP to allow websites to interface with a database.

PDF - Portable Document Format, Adobe file format used to display documents.

Perl - A programming language.

PHP - Stands for Hypertext Preprocessor. It is a programming language that is used predominantly in the sphere of websites. Running server side, it is often used to interface with a database, or perform tasks such as emailing a contact form to a specified email address.

Podcasting - The process of creating an audio file and uploading to a web server in order for other people to download and listen to it. It has been described as an audio version of a blog.

Robot - A program that is written to perform a specific task time after time; for instance a robot might index pages on the web for a search engine.

Search engine optimisation - The process of improving the ranking of a website in search engines against specified key words and popular search terms.

Spider - A computer program (maybe referred to as a robot or a crawler) that indexes web pages on the internet for a search engine.

URL - Stands for Uniform Resource Locator, and refers to the unique address of any Web document.

XML - Stands for Extensible Markup Language. Much stricter than HTML but very useful for defining your data in the most appropriate manner, ready for other methods and tools to format and display accordingly.